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Villanueva defends Aquino over ‘Dengvaxia’ mess

By: - Reporter / @MAgerINQ
/ 02:33 PM December 14, 2017

In this undated photo posted by Senator Joel Villanueva on his Instagram account on Thursday, December 14, 207, former President Benigno S. Aquino III carries one of the senator’s children during an event in Malacañang. (Photo from Villanueva’s Instagram account)

Senator Joel Villanueva has defended former President Benigno S Aquino III over the P3.5 billion anti-dengue vaccine fiasco, saying the ex-Chief Executive “acted in the best interest” of the people.

As a show of support for Aquino, Villanueva posted on Instagram on Thursday a photo of him and his family with the President in an undated event in Malacañang.

The photo showed the former leader carrying one of two of the senator’s children.

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“I stand by President Noy, given the circumstances, information and research given and available to him, he acted in the best interest of our people,” Villanueva captioned the photo.

“We will continue to seek accountability and make sure that the health of vaccinated children will be prioritized,” the senator added.

Villanueva posted the message while Aquino faced the Senate blue ribbon committee to explain why he approved the budget for the procurement of the vaccine, Dengvaxia, which was used in the anti-dengue immunization program of the Department of Health (DOH) that was launched during the term of then Health Secretary Janette Garin.

Dengvaxia was said to be harmful when administered to people who have no prior dengue infection.

Villanueva also said that he had to leave the hearing to attend to urgent matters.

It was Aquino, who appointed Villanueva as head of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) before he won a Senate seat in 2016.       /kga

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TAGS: anti-dengue, dengue, Dengvaxia, Health, Instagram, President Noynoy Aquino, Sanofi Pasteur, Senator Joel Villanueva
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